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tv   Self- Publishing Book Expo  CSPAN  January 18, 2014 11:15am-11:52am EST

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your idea. we don't think we can do to. i like the odds on that. i like we have gotten to that point. can we get that last step, that last mile. >> it is that ghandi quote. >> it is! >> the proposals we make are structure changes. we recognize that there are deep divides on issues like guns and reproductive rights, and all sort of other issues. and people are well organized to battle on the issues. what we argue is many of the structure changes we propose in an honest debate can find left right coalition that are unexpected. across the country when legislatures have voted to overturn citizens united. ares voted --
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republicans voted with the democrats to petition congress to act. we now have a republican cosponsor for a constitutional amendment that walter jones from the carolinas. saying, you know, look as a conservative republican, i think it has to happen. we have to have a fair fight. our argument is that our job is to go out and say, look, we can have honest differences on all sort of fundamental issues. we ought to have a politic that work in this country. i think there's a ton amount of space. we have not begun to occupy that space. we have not begun to make the demands for the structure changes. it's time to do that. it's time to say that a conservative republican and a liberal democrat ought to be able to agree that everyone
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should be able to vote. our elections should have meaning and that votes taught matter more than the dollar. i'm delighted. if that's the frame work of the debate i'll debate anybody on the issue. i think we might have some fun there. one final thing, constitutional amendments have been proposed not all have been passed. the era still is isn't on the books. i like to think i'll live to see it added to the constitutional amendment. you know what happened as it was proposed when we aim high for real fundamental reforms, sometimes we gate lot of other things along the way. at this point, we need automatic of those other things along the way. >> right. i'm afraid from the that is going to have to be it. they have a ton of energy. there's going to be a book signing. i'm going take my chair's prerogative and ask one
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question. will you sign my book while we all thank them for their incredible contribution? [applause] [inaudible conversations] visit to see any of the programs you see here.
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an overview of the current status of the u.s. self-publishly industry. featuring input from the organizers and presenters after the fifth annual self-publishing book expo. this is about half an hour. new york city, a place most of the u.s. publishing industrya once called home.bu in recent years, the prominentun publishing houses have on consolidated and self-publishing has exploded to a lucrativelucrt industry in iits own right.ight. is york o the celted tsishing book expo which now -- its fifth year in 2013. >> hand-in-hand was there were a lot of editors suddenly their own freelance companies, a lot of book designers out of work, and freelancing a lot, and so as a result, the little cottage industry started to sprout up. from 2009 until now, the number
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of companies that have started because of self-publishing, to me, is really amazing. you know, it's the growth of these sort of, you know, little companies that grew to be bigger companies, and these companies that are now like middlemen that help authors decide which book designer to use, which editor to use, and so there's a number of those companies. i think a lot of people who -- a lot of traditional people who lost jobs in the economic turn down found new life with self-publishing because now they are catering to that segment of the industry, and it's growing. they have a need. >> according to an october 2013 report, the bib graphic information management company, 391,000 self-published titles were created in 2012, 40% of which were electronic books, self-published titles jumped 22%
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between 2007 and 2012. industry leaders include create space, a greater than 33,000% increase in titles over a five-year period. smash words, which has become number two in the industry in four years, and lou:'s, a greater than 800% increase since 2007. booktv spoke to diane, the founder and organizer of the self-publishing book expo about how the industry has grown so fast. >> you know, first of all, i think it's a sheer number of books publishes is tremendous now, and i think that they have a lot more -- they have a lot more available to them now. there's things like crowd funding, kick starter, our pub flush, strictly publishing, where people go and raise money on their own to do the things that they really need to do to publish -- we like to say to
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publish smarter, you know, and i think a lot of people now -- the more they sort of learn, the more they realize that there are things they can do themselves. i think before that, a lot were going to the self-publishing company, whichever company it be, and purchasing the package. now, i also think that now there are a lot of traditionally published authors that are hybrid authors. you know, there's publishing traditionally, and choosing to self-publish on their own, and so i think it's a mix, but i think just the sheer numbers come from the idea that people are starting to learn how to do it right, detouring the amount quicker, writing them better, and it's finding an audience and the need. now there's the demand. >> she also explained how the annual expo has both reflected the growth of the self-publishing industry and assisted it. >> in the beginning, we really
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had to reach out to find people, to find exhibiters, to find sponsors. now, we're, you know, in a nice position where people are coming to us and saying, can you speak? you know, and we'd like to be an exhibiter, can we have a table, what does sponsorship entail, and so, you know, the tables turned because i think that people recognize there are not areas like this, you know, they do a nice job, and it's part of the bigger bea, and we're separate enough time-wise so one does not infringe on the other, but really other than us and them, and, you know, there's small shows here or there that pop up and some are internet-only and things like that, it's really not a lot out
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there. i think because of that, we benefited year after year after year, and i think, you know, now people sort of look to us as being kind of thee show in self-publishing, and, you know, that's a nice thing, and we're going to go into the future, who knows. first and foremost, what we do is try to come up with ideas for the panel. what do we think authors could benefit from? in the beginning, it was easy going through the basics in our own heads, you know, both having in-house experience, long in-house experience, we thought, okay, editorial, needs help with the cover, they definitely need distribution. you know, it was sort of very simple, you know, go through the basics of publishing, and that's what they needed, and we use a
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lot -- we leaned a lot on friends and colleagues over the years, on the traditional side and said, you know, would you please come? you know, i have to say the rest of my life, and i have very good friends in the industry and people rose to the occasion, and anybody i asked to do a publicity panel, marketing panels, people said sure, we'll do it, you know, and we got lucky with whatever sponsors we had that year, they had ideas for panels, and that's how we wound up with panels, and in the beginning, i think we had something, like, 15 to 16, this year, i think we're up to 18. >> the expo's keynote speaker was judith, president and publisher, and gave a room of aspiring authors her perspective on the self-publishing industry
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advising how to make a success of self-publishing. he's an an excerpt of her address. >> before i talk about exciting things we're doing in our self-publishing program, i wanted to sort of share the point that self-publishing is not a new trend. the time line of publishing. we can see in the paintings of the last quote in southern southwest france, a form of self-publishing taking place 17,000 year ago. these drawings are pigment on rock representing animals, symbols, and signs for their fellow tribes people. they were permanent, but not portable. then came the illuminated manuscript of the middle ages like these gospels for monks, self-publish the story.
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usually, a rich patron or for somebody in the church, permanent and only slightly portable. in 19 -- in -- sorry, in 1439, the media expert javas called the first technology entrepreneur invented the mechanical movable type used to print the catholic church because they couldn't light them up by hands fast enough because they sold so fast. in 1454, there was the movable type to create the first bible, an important moment. with the movable type, it was no longer a sifng l october written or reproduced by request. the publication of multiple copies of the book was a business enterprise, the production and market for distribution. the cost for books was lowers enormously, in turn, increased
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the distribution of books, books now became permanent, portable, and affordable. in 15 # 17, martin luther nailed the thesis to the door of the castle church in whysenberg, germany. he was angry about the catholic church selling indulgences, and it was printed on the recently invented press, and sold 300,000 copies. this was the first best seller. there was the partisan reformation and enlightment. the next big step was not until 1949, a teacher names anglo ruth from spain invented and pa tented the first electronic book to increase the number of and way the -- weight of the books the pupils carried to school. with the creation of prishing companies that printed and sold books in the modern era,
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self-publishing continued. it became expensive and cumbersome. fast forward to the interpret with self-publishing platforms available, there are now or very little barriers to entry. anyone can write and publish a book. the important thing is that no matter what form it takes, publishing is still communication from a writer to a reader. publishing requires specific skills, writing, publishing, editing, marketing, sells, managing budgets and communicating with the readers. when you self-publish, you do all these things, either yourself or hire someone to help you with them. in fact, you'll find hundreds of people at this expo who have created businesses around
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providing these services. the important question to ask yourself is, which one do you want to do? which ones do you not want to do? which ones are your particular skill? before we continue, a little about my publishing group, which i founded in 2002. today, we have ten separate prints, which you seen the screen. here are some, and there are many others. there's value, important to always state intentions. always begin as you mean to proceed. they began with the idea that a name should be the publishing intention, plural of atrium, a place open to the sky and open
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to new ideas. we want to create an environment where we grow and flourish and produce with books that had created meaning and purpose for people's lives. we wanted to build a bridge between the writer and reader just in the same way the and gent city was connected to the ocean by a series of canals. we also asked ourselves what could we do that's not already being done? we looked at where the gaps were both in the simon and schuster family and where market opportunities presented themselves, we had to think about what would we be good as developing and publishing. self-published authors. the queen of clean -- the queen -- talking dirty with the queen of clean was an
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opportunity self-published book that presented it to ourselves. they wrote an article for minnesota newspapers about stain removal, and the way to do that and published a little book that came to our notice. we took it over, republished it, started a category for her, and sold over 2 million copies of these books. i don't think you could actually publish this book in the same way today because the information is now available on the internet so when once you needed a book as a source for some information, you now have options for having that information free and exists elsewhere, something to think about. since then, those of you who may not know that then started a self-publishing term limits. he was working as a bartender in minnesota when he self-published a first novel. they bought rights, published ever since very, very successfully.
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we have 80 books in print, and, unfortunately, passed away earlier this year. then is an interesting story, writing erotic short stories to pass the time after her children went to bed. she copied them and mailed them to her girlfriends who loved the stories and asked for more. she self-published her novel "addicted," came to our attention, and we republished it making a corner stone. the movie will be out next year, and it's still in print. rose wrote hard cover historical fiction for us. introducing in the office, and in 2012, there was a sudden explosion of self-published books, original commercial novels selling like hot cakes. the e-books best seller list was filled with self-published
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authors who we've come to call indy authors signing many of them, some which you'll see on the screen and this year we published eight authors who wrote 18 books. >> can they add to the process to make them valuable? what does the author want? self-publish and have total control and total responsibility of the way their books are designed to packaged, marketed, and sold, or would they like to work with an editor and focus attention on developing their writing skills while allowing a team of designers, marketers, and sales people to contribute to their experiences and skills to the book's publication. without trading secrets, we look to authors with an ability to tell compelling stories.
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is there a sphaiing resolution? do you like the characters? do you hate them? are you supposedded to? engaged in the resolution of the conflict is there a clearly defined act? many of the self-published authors with us have a talent for keeping the reader glueded to the page. the next thing we look at is how many readers reviews there are. we knew when we bought "beautiful disaster" that she had already had 2200 reviews, mostly two and a half, four and a half stars. we look at what actually people are saying in the reviews, not just the number. it's very important. is the passion with which the reviews are written, are the readers and are the readers obsessed with characters like travis, the main characteristic? we look at how many fans are on facebook, how many twitter followers were there, are they interested in reading groups and writing groups? what are the bloggers saying?
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in building our list, we had to change our publishing behavior. we've had to be faster and much more flexible. we've had to be open. as the name implies. sometimes we publish the e-book first and time sometimes it's the e-book and trade paperback edition simultaneously. occasionally, we add hard cover collective edition. we're there to support and build readerrership doing things done by a mainstream publisher like getting dprix into physical stores, price clubs, libraries, ect., but we are not here to mess with things that made them successful in the first place. a strong and intimate connection to their readers, and it's deep its of what the readers want from the book. you run your own business and take on the multitude of time souping responsibilities that have come along with that.
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signing with us allows you to focus on writing with a dedicated group of marketing, advertising, production, and sales at your disposal working to the goal of building your audience. we'll be able to provide worldwide distribution throughout english language countries and selling rights on behalf of the authors. a good way of thinking of making a transition, if that's what you decide from being an author to self-published to a publisher is think twitter going public. it's a self-publishing equivalent. good decision making. the most important thing any publisher or author can do is make a good decision. i make the story of what happens in our office. the other day, one of our editors became an american citizen, and we decided to have a celebration cake for her. the way we wanted to surprise her and asked her to come in at the end of the one hour long meeting, and the cake was in the middle of the table, december
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cretely there, and 45 minutes into the meeting, a staff said, do you know what kind of cake that is? she said, it's an ice cream cake. [laughter] which was starting to become obvious. because -- so i use this example, when i want to know if i got all the information that i need to be able to make a good decision, i just say way kind of cake is this? i mean, tell me everything i need to know. you need to know everything you can possibly, and that's about asking the right questions. i have six questions throughout the publishing career, and in my everyday work with the editorial staff. the six questions of publishing are -- and if you publish yourself or published by a traditional or publisher, these are all the things that you must attend to. you must sort of ask questions that you find the answers that
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satisfy you because if you -- whatever you do, you want to establish the book to the best possible ability considering everything and that it's not melted on the table. why this book? this is about the editorial quality of the book. is my story interesting? does it have good characters? is it well edited? have i proofread files properly? is there a place in the market for it? is it something i passionally believe in? is it the best book for me? these days, when you put a book up on amazon, for example, and you get bad reviews, you can take it down, rewrite it, and pay attention to what the critics say, but in a publishing house, all those things take place prior to the book being published. basically, the editorial process and selection process that we go through is about having people who you know, clearly identified, and who have a lot of experience in a world of a
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particular character, category, making those decisions. who will read it? is your book -- start thinking about who you readership is going to be. is it a woman 85-25, college students, teenage boys, or other african-american readers? have a clear idea. once you identified the readers, you can now find ways of communicating with them. you're not just shouting to everybody on the street. you're saying, hello, hello, you there in the red sweat e i want to talk to you. how will you tell people about the book? this is where publicity and marketing come into the picture. there's primary vehicles to get in communicating and starting
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the word of mouth. examples here, traditional advertising on the pin board, authors, publicity on television, many, many things, but always in -- there will be a limit to what you can do. you will have a limited amount of options available to you because it is for everyone, and you have to decide what's the best way to community kate to your audience? is my reader, my 25-year-old college student going to be reading this blog, so therefore i can be -- there's a chance of communicating with them? there's marketing also running the gamet of getting posters in bookstore windows, publishing online sweep staix, fun give aways, anything you can think of to bring your book to someone's intention. think back to the pencil that dick simon attached to the first crossword puzzle. how many books will you sell?
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i think this is the crucial question everybody should ask because all your financial decisions are going to be based on this premise. do i want to sell my ten books to ten friends, or do i want to sell a book to a million people? at what point do you consider your book a success in it's important to have points of success along the way so you are not miserable. anyway, i can tell you that from experience. at what point you need to look at the rankings, reviews, excess the market, and educate what's happening, and that's a realistic expectation of the book based on your categories, based on who you identified as your readership. there's a lot of work to be done, and the nature of the work and cost of it relates directly to the number of books you're going to sell. if you hire peopled to advertising in marketing for you or put an ad in the newspaper, make sure that investment has some way of returning itself to you in fiche book sales, so
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always ask yourself how many books will i sell? why will you sell this many? not just because it's the best book you have written. some publishers look at history, of course, but you can't see the past looking over your shoulder, but you can by looking in the mirror seeing what's behind you. we'll, for example, publishing a second book in seven years, she writes once every seven years, that last tuesday, but we knew that we had sold over a million copies of the tale, her previous book, so that gave us some indication of what to expect of how we would be able to sell the books. there are different ways of looking at rankings of other books you see on some of their online resources, how many people are there in your target audience, what organization to take in place over twitter, and is it a trending topic, how many
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people jump into any particular conversation? these are all things that help you justify and work out whether you're number of books you're going to sell has some merit. >> there are many clues there, requiring a little research, imu very valuable. will i sell books only in e-book form online or in the physical form as well. do i want it sold in chape stores, bookstores, supermarkets, airports, available to libraries, or do i want to see it published in spanish language these are all things to consider, i have been able to give insight into the landscape of publishing today. there's many different models of publishing, and the important question is what kind of author
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do you want to be? what are you good at? where do you want to spend your time? what model is suited for you? traditional publishers and self-published authors are not blogger heads. traditional publishing is not for everyone as self-publishing is not for everyone. find the model that suits you best and ask what kind of cake it is. thank you. [applause] >> the entire expo crafted to assist the self-publishing author to do what was advised. ask themselves the right questions and plan well to sell to the right audience. >> what we try to tell people is
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the one thing stressed the most is really define your goal. you know, some people have simple goals. they want to extend the platform, write a book, have the book available in speaking engagement, and that's their goal. that's a noble goal. some people want to write their family history, publish some copies, give it to their family, and some people want to build the readership. you know, and sioux what we try to tell people is first and foremost is what is it you want to accomplish with writing the book? once you do that, think about how you're going to go about doing that, how is that going to happen? really plan it out. you know, everything from cover design, editing, distribution, media, social networking, you
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know, there's so many arms to this, and what we really try to tell people is, you're basically op your own. you have to think about this, and what the smart authors are doing now is they are looking at it as a business, and they are saying to themselveses, you know what? i could use the services 69 good editor and service design and do social media myself. you know, this sort of breaking it down so that they can determine which things they can do on their own, which thicks they'll need help for, hoich that's going to cost, and budget themselves out that way. those, i think, are the more successful authors. >> another component to self-publishing success is the quality of the content. >> the best thing of all, i think, is from 2009 until now, the quality of the books is as
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no , ma'amically, a whole other world. >> two organizations that have cricketed to informing the public about higher quality of self-published writings are watt pad and indy brag. >> watt pad is the world's largest op line community for rating and sharing stories, and we, in not so many words are the youtube of readers and writers. what we do is writers can go on, upload their works for free, and then our readers can go online and they can read works for free. at the moment, we are sitting at 20 million monthly users, and we are a huge social -- socially engaged community, a really positive community, and a lot of the writers are using it basically to build a fan base to market their book. you know, you can't really anywhere else on the interpret
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find 20 million people that are just looking to read on any other social network where they want to connect with their authors, where they want to give constructive criticism. they want to give feedback, and, you know, it's basically the perfect place for writers to be right now, especially independent self-published writers. >> indy brag is a community of readers, mostly in the u.s., but spread around ten other countries around the globe, all of whom share a passion for reading. ordinary people. no literary experts, no professors of english, and it's a collective community of readers, and on the other side is authors, self-publishedded awe fors who want to be recognized, who want to get some degree of, is my book good or not and where's the conduit in between. they nominate book to us, the authors, send out to the readers, and nine out of ten times we go back to the author
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saying, i'm sorry, but one out of ten times, it gets a thumbs up. there's a list of criteria, not different than any other literary expert has. the sing the most important thing we ask readers is this is book to recommend to your best friend. first and foremost is grammar, and then you move quickly through a line editing, is the story flow, the writing style, and do you like the writer's voice? is it interesting? does each chapter a end with a cliff hanger to in effect to pull you to the next chapter. we get down to developmental things, does the character ark? we explain what we want readers to look at, but does the character who start off bad stay bad, change, he or she change? is there an appropriate amount of foreshadowing? yeah, that's the list. we don't want them to be professors of literature, but look down and say, yeah, yeah --
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it's a checklist. we want the average joe, jane, so we're not going to ask a lot of vetting up front. you have to be 18. you have to have at least high school. just by default, it's fallen out that 80% of them have a batch already's, master's, or drrt. we did not force that. they have to be living in the u.s., fluent in english and prove that to us. other than that, they get in the pool, and they are tracked. we send out five books, nothing nefarious or send out a sink l ball, but we track them and watch them so on average five to six people read any given book, sometimes book clubs could be 20. if they are in sync with peers it's nots a red light, it's a green light. if a book five people said no on the converse, we go


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